Since he was 7 months old, my son Jack has been in daycare/preschool. He’s currently finishing out Pre-K this year; starting Kindergarten in the fall.
This entire time, he has been around kids of all other races. This is Nashville; quite the ethnic melting pot.
No one has ever brought to his attention that people have “different colors” of skin from one another. He has yet to notice this on his own; that we are all ultimately different shades of brown.
He is aware that people have different hair colors and eye colors, but not skin colors.
I assume that at some point, perhaps within the next few years, he’ll learn from other kids at his school that people can be identified by their race.
Imagine: to be a kid who has no concept of race; or more importantly, prejudice or racism.
Without someone teaching them, I suppose kids don’t know these things?
Since I took my son to see the new Star Wars movie a week ago, he has kept bringing up Finn; one of the main characters and heroes:
“Daddy, look. This new Lego spaceship I made is like the one Finn flies on Star Wars!”
My son is completely unaware that Finn is of a different race. All my son knows is, Finn is a cool guy.
He’s just as clueless of any concept of race in regards to any of the wonderful people in our lives who happen to be of other races.
And my plan is to keep it that way, until the day comes when the topic is actually related to honoring and celebrating that person’s culture.
Why would I bring up their race anyway? It’s irrelevant to him and it’s irrelevant to me.
I believe in the importance of honoring and celebrating a person’s culture. But until then, I just don’t see a point in bringing up the topic of race to my son.
After all, he’s managed just fine without knowing for these first 5 years of his life. I don’t see how he’s at a disadvantage not knowing.